Everyone I know seems to be rebooting their diet and exercise regime this month and I am no exception. I am a bit unique in my approach though because I prefer to take things at a slower pace. I refer to this mentality as #teamturtle. Jumping head into a crash diet or an extreme workout schedule has never worked for me, and honestly I haven’t seen it work well for many people around me either.
It is entertaining to hear friends say things like “I’m giving up sweets forever” and “I’m going to workout for an hour every day”. Declaring you are going to run 5 miles a day, when you haven’t ran since high school gym class freshman year, just doesn’t seem like the best idea. Is it optimism or insanity? No judgment, but I’m voting on the latter.
Why not start a little slower? Maybe tackle something you can actual stick to or will do again next week? It may be the year to take a note from the tortoise and take things a little easier and hopefully beat that sassy hare along the way.
#1 – Monday: Walk 500 more steps. Park at the end of the lot and walk. Actually get out of your car and walk your child towards their school if they will let you. Take the stairs. Pick up items in your home and put them where they need to be, one item at a time. Take a walk on the beach or on a new trail.
#2 – Tuesday: Drink one extra glass of water and walk 500 more steps. Sorry wine, beer and soda don’t count, but yes, coffee does. Put fruit or flavor in your water if you don’t love the taste. Take a bottle of water with you on errands and drink at the stoplights. Don’t stay thirsty my friends.
#3 – Wednesday – Eat one extra serving of fruit, drink one extra glass of water and walk 500 more steps. Grab an apple and eat it on the way to pick up, or if you are heading to eat at a restaurant. Eat a banana after your walk. Grab some berries for breakfast. Try a fruit you haven’t had in a while or add some berries to your yogurt.
#4 – Thursday – Eat one extra serving of vegetables, eat one extra serving of fruit, drink one extra glass of water and walk 500 more steps. Add some broccoli to your rice, or zoodles to your pasta dish. Put mushrooms on that turkey burger and try kale chips with your sandwich. There are so many convenient ways to add veggies to our meals these days, get out of your comfort zone and bulk up your meals with color and flavor.
#5 – Friday – Take five minutes to do nothing, eat one extra serving of vegetables, eat one extra serving of fruit, drink one extra glass of water and walk 500 more steps. This may sound like a silly tip, but you don’t realize how life takes over and you stop focusing on what you really need: me time. Choose to read, or write, or dance, or skip, or sit quietly. Take some time to reflect on the healthier choices you made this week and pat yourself on the back, or take a quick nap.
I won’t promise your week will be perfect, but I bet you will feel a lot better if you focus on adding some good food and movement to your life, one small step at a time. Remember “they” say it takes around 21 days to build a new habit, so hang in there, we got this.
Cheers – Stephanie